What’s a Group Health Census? Step 1 in Your Sale


If your market niche as a health insurance broker is employee benefits for small businesses (or, even, large businesses), you know to begin a quote for your prospective or existing client you need a group census.

The Group Health Census form, which can vary by carrier, asks for essential information about the group to deliver the most accurate quote for the employer. It includes:

  1. The name of each employee to be insured
  2. Date of birth for each employee
  3. Gender
  4. Home ZIP Code
  5. Date of birth for spouse (if he or she is to be covered)
  6. Date of birth for each child (if he or she is to be covered)

WBQuote, Word & Brown’s quote engine, offers a generic census form that is accepted by all of our carrier partners. You can download a copy here in the forms section of our website

Age and ZIP Code affect the cost of each person’s coverage, so accuracy in the entry of information in the group census is critical. (If your client is completing the form on their own, please stress the importance of accuracy; an incorrect birth date can adversely affect the quote for an entire business.)

Effective January 1, 2018, separate rates for children begin at age 15. The same rate applies for children from birth to age 14. The employer’s (or employee’s) cost for child coverage is limited to the first three children. That means, for example, if an employee has five enrolling dependents, he or she only pays a premium for the first three children.

Keep in mind when using the Group Health Census form that it includes Personally Identifiable Information (PII), which is sometimes referred to as sensitive personal information. (You probably learned about PII as part of your initial training to become an insurance broker.)

PII includes information that can be used to uniquely identify, contact, or locate an individual – either alone or in conjunction with other sources – such as full name, Social Security Number (SSN), driver’s license number, date of birth, place of birth, mother’s maiden name, genetic information, address, telephone number, and other identifiers.

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requires special care be taken when it comes to PII and Protected Health Information (PHI). You may want to use an encrypted email service when passing employee census data back and forth with your prospects and clients.

As a reminder, PHI includes anything used in a medical context that can identify a patient (whether an adult of child) including:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Birth date
  • Credit card information
  • Driver’s license
  • Medical records

PHI is subject to stringent confidentiality and disclosure requires that do not apply to most industries in the U.S. Protecting PHI is always legally required, although protecting PII is mandated only in some cases.

For more information on California privacy laws, link here. For Nevada information, link here.

The Word & Brown website allows registered brokers to send a census form directly to a client (or prospect) with a personal message. Once you join forces with us, you’ll be able to login and send a census from there.

Word & Brown is a great resource for brokers, and there are many reasons to choose us as your partner, including our exclusive Business Plan Workbook and Marketing Guide.


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